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Suunto - 12 week Mountain race preparation by Max King

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Suunto - 12 week Mountain race preparation by Max King


Max King - Suunto Coach


12 Weeks

Plan Description

Program for preparation for a mountain race distance with a distance of 20k-50k and 5000ft+ (1500m+) of vertical.

This program is for a runner with a good base level of fitness wanting to run a mountain race that includes significant elevation gain and loss on the order of 1500m+ (5000ft+). This program adds to that fitness level and prepares you for the rigors of a mountain marathon such as the long climbs and quad busting descents. It is recommended to start this program with a base level of fitness able to complete a half marathon distance comfortably. For example, your long run may be an easy effort flat 15-20km on an easy trail. The plan recommends running 4-6 days per week with one day off and one or two days of cross training if possible.

Using this program you can expect to complete a mountain race with a distance of 20km-50km feeling confident that you are well trained to the distance and able to make it to the finish line.
The key workouts in this plan will be hilly easy runs to gain vertical distance in mountainous terrain and hill interval workouts to increase your power and ability to withstand long climbs both up and down. It will be important to focus on intervals, long runs, and hilly runs.

The total volume of training as well as vertical feet will progress throughout the program and be the key to increasing fitness and endurance to withstand the rigors of a mountain race.
If you find yourself wanting more and need to add sessions to increase volume it is recommended that you add in a second morning or evening easy run-on days with other easy runs. If you need to remove a session due to overall fatigue or time constraints, it is best to skip the easy recover runs and focus on key workouts. If you need to remove a session due to fatigue or soreness from a previous workout try to substitute in low impact active recovery such as a bike ride, swim, or ski tour.

The sudden increase in vertical in this plan may result in soreness and fatigue. If you experience soreness and fatigue that impacts your current workouts feel free to shift your plan around so that you feel good for key workouts. If you feel like you may become injured by doing a session, then it is best to skip the session and consult a medical professional.

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Training Plan Sample Week


Average Weekly Breakdown

Workouts Weekly Average Longest Workout
Run x6
06:25:00 03:30:00
Workouts Per Week Weekly Average Longest Workout
06:25:00 03:30:00

Training Load By Week

This plan works best with the following fitness devices:

  • Heart Rate Monitor

All supported devices

  • This plan includes a Free Basic TrainingPeaks Account.
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  • Plan for your event in the TrainingPeaks calendar.
  • Track your weight, sleep, hours, fatigue and stress while you train.
  • Syncs daily with other popular apps like Garmin and MyFitnessPal.

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This plan is protected by our Refund Policy and may, with the author's approval, be exchanged for a plan of equal value from the same author.

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